You’ve eaten the turkey and stuffed yourself with stuffing and pie. Thanksgiving has been conquered! Now, it’s time to conquer the shopping equivalent of the Olympics: Black Friday. If you are brave enough to walk through the doors of even ONE retail establishment on this day, you will need the 3 P’s: patience, a plan, and plenty of caffeine. Really, you should consider all three P’s from now until New Year’s; the register lines won’t be getting any shorter.
I can’t help you to learn patience (if only it were that easy!) and sadly, I cannot deliver you coffee through the magic of computer screens, but I can help you with that all-important second P: planning. You need a good plan to get through this day and the holidays!
We all spend too much money during this time of the year, and if we’re going to be spending our hard-earned money, we should put a little effort into making sure that we’re buying the best products at the best prices. One of the easiest ways you can shop smartly–especially when it comes to big-ticket items like cars, electronics, and appliances–is by consulting Consumer Reports. If you go to the LPL’s homepage and look to the right of Checking the Shelf, you will see that Consumer Reports is the current Featured Database. We want you to maximize your library card privileges! Current and back copies of Consumer Reports are also available in the library.
If you need help organizing and strategizing, ABC News has a good guide to the operating hours, hottest items, and best deals from some of the bigger retailers, like Best Buy and Kohl’s. Blackfriday.com brings together the Black Friday ads of dozens of retailers. My advice would be to use these sites as a starting point; always double check sales with the actual retailer. And don’t forget to read the small print, where those awful exclusions hide.
And if the lines are too long, and the crowds are too big, there’s always Cyber Monday. With a click of the mouse, we can have packages of all shapes and sizes shipped to our doors (sometimes for free!) like magic.
When you need to escape the madness, stop by the LPL for some free entertainment. I can promise you that the lines will be far shorter than any you will encounter in the big world of retail.